IL-15 Promotes Polyfunctional NK Cell Responses to Influenza by Boosting IL-12 Production.

Wagstaffe, HR; Nielsen, CM; Riley, EM; Goodier, MR; (2018) IL-15 Promotes Polyfunctional NK Cell Responses to Influenza by Boosting IL-12 Production. Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. ISSN 0022-1767 DOI:

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IL-15 is a key regulator of NK cell maintenance and proliferation and synergizes with other myeloid cell-derived cytokines to enhance NK cell effector function. At low concentrations,<i>trans</i>-presentation of IL-15 by dendritic cells can activate NK cells, whereas at higher concentrations it can act directly on NK cells, independently of accessory cells. In this study, we investigate the potential for IL-15 to boost responses to influenza virus by promoting accessory cell function. We find that coculture of human PBMCs with inactivated whole influenza virus (A/Victoria/361/2011) in the presence of very low concentrations of IL-15 results in increased production of myeloid cell-derived cytokines, including IL-12, IFN-α2, GM-CSF, and IL-1β, and an increased frequency of polyfunctional NK cells (defined by the expression of two or more of CD107a, IFN-γ, and CD25). Neutralization experiments demonstrate that IL-15-mediated enhancement of NK cell responses is primarily dependent on IL-12 and partially dependent on IFN-αβR1 signaling. Critically, IL-15 boosted the production of IL-12 in influenza-stimulated blood myeloid dendritic cells. IL-15 costimulation also restored the ability of less-differentiated NK cells from human CMV-seropositive individuals to respond to influenza virus. These data suggest that very low concentrations of IL-15 play an important role in boosting accessory cell function to support NK cell effector functions.

Item Type: Article
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases > Dept of Immunology and Infection
PubMed ID: 29491009


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